October is Poetry Month on TuDiabetes!

One of the things about TuDiabetes that has historically made it a truly unique place within the Diabetes Online Community was our focus on artistic expression. Over the years we as a community have done a number of beautifully creative projects aimed at encouraging people to use artistic expression as a way to tell our stories, connect to one another, comfort and inspire each other, educate others about what it feels like to have diabetes, and more.

In the last couple years those artistic projects have largely fallen by the wayside in favor of other endeavors, and but we’re bringing them back! For the next 5 months we will have a monthly artistic project for members to participate in, at the end of which we plan to select artistic pieces from community members to publish in a Diabetes Community Expression book which will be sold through the DHF online store! Some of our old-timers may recall that we published a book called No Sugar Added Poetry™ in this way, years ago, which is absolutely beautiful and which is still in demand today!

To participate, just share your poetry in the thread below! Don’t consider yourself a poet? No matter. This is about self expression, and there’s no way to do it wrong. So give it a try and share!


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I posted this poem on TuDiabetes in May 2013 after Cici survived a bout with cancer. She survived another bout in August 2015 with her continued Golden Retriever optimism.

A Reminder

Lurking in the back of my mind are numbers, letters,
Type 1, MDI, Count those Carbs,
one more PWD.
Why do we work so hard to live?

My golden Cici came nose to nose with death.
She has survived.
Once again she smiles a golden smile.
So many human friends, dog friends, cared.

Thank you, Cici, for the reminder.
We test, inject, keep on counting,
because others care for us,
because there is joy in caring for ourselves.

MDI = multiple daily injections
PWD=person with diabetes


I posted this poem on TuDiabetes in September, 2015.

Visible/Invisible Disabilities

They said, You need bed rest.
My twelve year old swollen joints
were not visible under the covers
nor when I fell up and down the stairs.
In coming years I took my homework to my bedroom;
locked away, I slept on my books.

My father’s goiter was so very visible.
My hyperthyroidism was invisible,
although, as with my childhood RA,
fatigue hovered around me like an invisible cloak.

Anemia, iron and pernicious,
left me with a pale and jaundiced face.
Hospitalized, I slept on my college textbooks,
absorbing B12 and iron.
My room-mate whispered that I was wasting time with my books,
that I would never leave our room alive.

Type One and celiac invaded my life at sixty-three,
invisible to the world until I swallow pills or shoot insulin.
Diabetes and celiac, constant lifetime companions,
so prevalent that I see them in my mind
as clearly as I see my arthritic hands before my face.

Osteo-, no longer RA, haunts my bones.
Now I walk a little, not far or fast, but still I walk and type and live.
I am lucky that with my invisible disabilities,
I have not completely faded away, lost under the invisible cloak.


Truly stunning, @Trudy1. Thank you so much.


Thank you Trudy, so much depth in these poems.


I remember both—because how could I not…Thank you for bringing them forward…xx000

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@EmilyC…Where are the other poems previously posted, but recent, Like Katie’s. I thought they were all going to be in one place…or @MarieB…I guess I am too easily lost still. But it’s been some sleepless days and nights here in Portlandia which may be part of the problem…And when I get around to posting one in awhile, where do I post it—as a Reply to somebody else?..And I had a short video from TED (just a few minutes) that I thought all of us participating might find inspiring. Where do I post that? It’s the poet Robin Morgan reading from her work on aging and Parkinson’s which is as yet invisible in her…Blessings, as ever…

the search function here is really very good, unlike the old days when it never worked. I clicked on the magnifying glass (upper right) and just entered “katie poem” and it found her poem right away, here as a separate topic is the “Community: Arts and Poetry” category. If you want to add a new topic with the Robin Morgan reading, I think that would be GREAT. or add a reply here. I LOVE the TED talks, my husband and I listen to them on Sunday mornings on NPR.

I’m also going to listen to the one you mentioned on language in another topic

love ya Judith, big big hugs! I know it’s been a rough few days and I’m holding you in my thoughts.


Yes, I love the TED talks too, Marie.

Okay–yes–Didn’t think of that–Doh! But what if I specifically want to see the new Poetry Month poems or all the Invisible Illness ones more or less one after another–I just scan down the titles in the Arts/Poetry category and hope I find the appropriate ones? I see Trudy put the “event” in the title of her post. Is that the best way? Still trying to get used to the no groups format. We all just posted there, unless a group for a special event was started separately.

After it took years to get used to composing a new poem in my computer, when I had to replace my computer awhile back, it came with effing Windows 8 in which Microsoft wants to help by telling me every first letter of a line has to be capitalized and you should see what happens when I try to indent lines----Growl. David’s trying to figure that out and I got out my old notebooks. I may have to print it out by hand with my #1 pencil and scan it in–LOL…I’ll post Robin Morgan’s reading after lunch. You’ll love it…And Thanks for your patience!

you might want to just click on the Community:Arts and Poetry category (click on the hamburger and you’ll see the category titles). here’s what you get

you’ll see all the things posted there in chronological order, most recent first. if you are looking for something specific, like “invisible illness poems”, I’d use the magnifying glass and just enter those words. it works great!

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Oh so many lancets needles and pricks,
Four times a day I do finger sticks,
Injections galore, skin that is sore,
And just to make everything hard,
I must count every carb.
“You’ll get better if you lose some weight”
As if it were a character trait.
What no one sees, is the warrior in me
And just beyond the horizon,
A new day, and a battle worth fighting.


(I have written this on the 15th of January, 2015.)
Nine years have passed by, my friend, with the blink of an eye
At first, I used to find you unbearable and heavy
But now, I’m not sure anymore that I know how to go on without you
It was weird that you were the one who enriched my life and made me stronger
You gave me a goal, to seek out people like me and be their friends as well as you
Through the mourns and sorrows, I was able to find joy
I am sorry to have ever wished you gone
For now, I am delighted, my friend, that it was you whom I met that day

Type 1 since winter 2006


Lovely @Jenny14…So nice to see positive thoughts about our common scourge. But I get it. It becomes so rooted in self-definition that it becomes hard to imagine a different way of being!..Blessings!

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Thanks @Judith for the props! I’ll re-post here :slight_smile:

Invisible Disability:

Is when your post-exam migraine
Becomes your sweaty tachycardia
And your heart races as you do for your
Gastroparetic vomit to make it in the sink.
And your peri-migraine grape leaves that you
Bolused for so carefully betray your
Blood cells with the hypoglycemia of
Glucose, left.
So now your sweaty tachycardia rides your
Low blood sugar just like it had your dysautonomia.
And you think through your hypoglycemic confusion,
bless my brain fog-
If I comprehended this reality I might get



Depressed, I pick up a paintbrush
and can’t force my miserable self
to cover the white canvas
sadness engulfs me.

I am numb, beached
my creativity so sterile
it cannot form into
a comprehensible concept.

Forlornly I set to work
nothing is right
I am so uptight shapes, tones, tints
colour has deserted me.

My life is as grey as my palette
there is no beauty in the
trees, stream, sky
birds sing, I do not hear.

Slowly I return
into a life filled with colour
light fills my window
daylight has set me free.

I can again eat my meagre
diabetic fare, take the pills
accept this part of my life
the part I would like to abandon.


Thanks, my friend…You capture it all perfectly. They grey numbness, lethargy, the way everything in life can feel meager…Blessings, as ever…

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